In a busy decade, the northern borders with British territory were resolved by the Webster-Ashburton and Oregon Treaties (1842, 1846), and the Union was expanded by the admission of Florida, and the (consensual) annexation of Texas in 1845. A jingoistic war with Mexico followed over disputed borders. Decisive American victory led to the vast Mexican Cession via the Treaty of Guadalupe-Hidalgo (1848). Gold was struck in California shortly before its cession, leading to its fast-track admission to statehood (1850). Over the same period, the Mormons attempted to grab most of the rest of the Mexican Cession, seeking recognition for a ‘theodemocratic’ State of Deseret. The proposal was seriously debated, but ultimately rejected, the Utah Territory being organized instead. In the Book of Mormon, Deseret means ‘honeybee’, and bees also featured in the bloodless ‘Honey War’ between Iowa Territory and Missouri, in which three trees containing beehives were chopped down. Iowa was rewarded for its valour with statehood.
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